One important operation that happens prior to farming on a particular land is clearing of land. It is the elimination of all plants, grasses, and/or trees for the purpose of preparing a land for cultivation or construction. There are numerous activities that the clearing of land demands and the activities are also based on the kind of land, the topography of the soil, the condition of the soil, the amount of clearing that needs to be carried out and the objective for land clearing. A primary operation in land clearing is the removal of all plants at the ground level and stacked together to be burnt for the roots to decay. Another operation is the removal of damaged trees and removal of stumps which are also gathered together to be burnt. These operations are known as breaking of soil.
Purposes of Land Clearing
Here are some of the most common reasons why people clear lands
- To make a land habitable: When a vacant land is overgrown with unwanted trees and weeds, land clearing is the first option people run to. People clear lands to prepare a place for habitation, or to make it safer for human accommodation.
- Stops spread of disease: Clearing of land also stops the spread of disease. When a land becomes overgrown with thick bushes, unwanted plants and trees, there are chances that it is a home to several disease-carrying insects and/or animals. Hence, clearing a land proves to be a massive step to making sure that a land is safe.
- Clearing makes land look more attractive: Land clearing has an aesthetic side to it. The elimination of overgrown bushes may mean the birth of a clean, well-trimmed, and well organized garden. Prior to clearing, the land is often littered with different things. Clearing the land will lead to the disappearance of the trash, unwanted plants on the land and make it appealing.
Some Effects of Land Clearing
Despite the importance of land clearing discussed above, carrying out this operation comes with effects that are significant for plants, animals and humans.
Displacement of Natural Habitats: Clearing of land means the native habitats of the land have been removed, thus creating room for alien species to occupy the land which portends to be an existential threat to the plants and animals of the land. This inadvertently affects the biodiversity of the land, which harms the balance of the ecosystem.
It can lead to Erosion: Clearing of land can also lead to soil erosion since the plants and trees serve as a cover for the soil having been removed.
Methods of Land Clearing
Most tree service firms make use of varying methods to clear land, and their option is based on the size of the land and the purpose of wanting to clear the land. Below are three popular methods for Land Clearing:
Burning: It is perhaps the most popular land clearing method as it requires to light a fire to the land in a monitored style. The aim is to burn the trees and plants on the land before the fire is put off.
Mechanical Machine Clearing: This involves the use of machines like bulldozers, tractors, etc., to get rid of the bushes in a land. Sometimes, it comes after the bushes have been burned. Mechanical Machine Clearing is mostly used in large lands with several trees to be cleared or stumps to get rid of.
Manual Clearing: This involves the use of manual tools like machetes and hoes to clear the bushes in a particular land. It is basically applicable to small lands where there are no trees.
The Use of Chemicals: The use of herbicides and other chemicals can be effective in killing and controlling weed in a land.
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